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Customizing MS Word Menu Items

Friday, February 17th, 2006 by | Filed Under: MS Office Help, MS Word

Customizing MS Word Menu Items

Do you hate having a bunch of toolbars open all the time?

I’ve worked with many different people over the years and I’ve noticed that some people just hate having their workspace cluttered with open toolbars. In their perfect world, everything is accessed with either a menu or a key combination.

Not a bad idea, if that suits your work style.

However, it seems to me that it could get to be quite a pain. After all, some things are buried within menus and windows.

For example, paragraph indenting is under the Format menu, Paragraph choice. Plus, part of the options are in the Paragraph window. Seems to me a button is faster and easier, but that means needing more toolbar space.

Seems like a no win situation, doesn’t it?

Fortunately for all of us, it’s not!

The first solution for this was discussed in last Wednesday’s issue. You could use the Alt + Ctrl + + to make a keyboard shortcut.

That is a great idea for my readers who love key combinations and are good at remembering them.

But what about the people who want the stuff conveniently located in a menu?

Is there help for them?

The answer is yes, of course, why else would we have come this far?

Believe it or not, it is possible to make changes to your menus. You can add and delete items from menus and I’m sure it’s easier than you ever thought it could be.

So if you’ve decided to give this one a try, I bet you’re ready to find out the “how to” part, so let’s begin.

To add something to a menu:

Press Alt + Ctrl + =

Your mouse pointer will change into a large, bold plus sign. (The Esc key will cancel this process).

Now use your mouse and move the new pointer to a button whose command you want placed in a menu.

Left click.

And there you have it. The mouse pointer should have returned to normal and if you take a quick moment to look in the menus, you’ll find your new command nicely placed among the usual menu items.

You also might want to notice that the new item has the usual underlined letter. This indicates that you can use the Alt key and then the correct series of letters to get to that item in the menus.

Now that you have the “how to add items part,” we should probably should talk about removing a command from a menu.

Here you should start with Alt + Ctrl + – (the minus to the left of the = key).

Again your mouse pointer will change. This time it will become a large, bold minus sign.

Now use your mouse to find the menu item to remove.

Click it.

Poof! Your pointer is returned to normal and if you go back into the menu, you’ll find that the offending item is gone.

And there you have it. Menu control you never knew you had.

~ April

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